By Dipo Olowookere
Minister of State for Aviation, Mr Hadi Sirika, has disclosed that the reconstruction of the runway of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja was already 57.5 percent near completion.
Speaking in Abuja on Thursday, the Minister said the project, mid-way into the six weeks earmarked for it, would be completed as scheduled.
He told journalists during an inspection tour of the project that, “Work is going on smoothly as you can see. We have taken you round and everything is in order.”
He said further that, “The contractor has mobilised fully and we have now gone about 57.5 percent of the total work, which is good, which shows that we are on course, which shows that we are on time, which shows that we are doing what we are supposed to do to ensure that the runway is opened come April 19, 2017.”
The Minister said in addition to the opening of the runway at the expiration of the six-week target, an upgraded terminal to ensure passenger comfort, in line with the protocol of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), will also be ready.
“This airport will be opened come April 19 and it will not only be opened at the time but the terminal building will wear a new look.
“We are doing a complete rehabilitation of Terminal D of the International Airport. We will put escalators and lifts at the terminal and also we are opening a lounge for the physically challenged and the elderly,” he said.
Mr Sirika said work on the runway is also going on simultaneously with lighting installation and laying of cables, which have also reached an advanced stage.
He said for the first time in Nigeria, glasphalt – a variety of asphalt that uses crushed glass – is being used to reinforce the runway and also prevent cracks.
In his remarks, the Minister of Information and Culture said the inspection tour was aimed at providing first-hand experience for the journalists on the progress so far made on the reconstruction of the runway.
“Last week Tuesday, we took a trip by train to Kaduna together. We experienced the train ride, we saw the train station and the Honourable Minister (of State for Aviation) received us at the airport, where we were taken round the operations at the Kaduna Airport and we came back together by road to give you a wholesome and complete experience of the efforts we have put in place to ensure minimal inconvenience and maximum security and safety, occasioned by the temporary closure of the airport
“We believe it’s only fitting that we bring you here today, since we have three weeks gone from the six weeks we promised, for you to come and see the extent of work that has been done,” he said.
Wakanow, ValueJet to Boost Local Flight Inventory
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
A partnership aimed to boost local flight inventory has been entered into between Wakanow and ValueJet.
According to a statement from the foremost travel tech company, the deal allows Wakanow to host ValueJet’s inventory on its website and increase local flight inventory available to local travellers.
ValueJet is the latest airline to partner with Wakanow, joining its network and enabling Wakanow-connected customers to find and use bespoke solutions to support their specific travel needs and requirements.
The deal aligns with Wakanow’s aim of delivering access to all local flight inventory in real time and an all-year-round flight schedule. It also showcases its continuous commitment to the development of the domestic travel industry in Nigeria.
“As the foremost travel tech company in Nigeria and West Africa, this partnership for us is a reinforcement of our commitment to give our customers the best and to remain the number one distribution partner to our Nigerian Airlines.
“We are constantly innovating around our customers’ travel needs and partner with relevant stakeholders to ensure that our customers enjoy a robust and seamless service offering.
“Partnering with ValueJet, who share in our vision of delivering a unique travel experience at a great value to our joint customers, was certain,” the chief executive of Wakanow Nigeria, Mrs Adenike Macaulay, said.
While corroborating the CEO, the Group Chief Technology Officer of Wakanow Group, Mr Oyedeji Ojo, said, “Wakanow, as a leader in the Nigerian travel industry, has continued to bring value to air travellers through collaborations.
“We’re delighted to welcome ValueJet as a Partner, and together, we will serve our customers with great flight inventories and concentrate on creating enhanced traveller experiences across all customer touchpoints.”
On his part, the Chief Commercial Officer of Value Jet, Mr Trevor Henry, said, “We are happy to announce our strategic partnership with Wakanow, making history as the first travel company to provide ValueJet’s Live Inventory bookable in real-time, thus enabling the delivery of a seamless booking experience for Wakanow and ValueJet’s customers.”
Wakanow, Africa’s foremost travel tech agency, offers the best travel deals and experiences within the global travel industry to corporate and individual air travellers.
Normalcy Restored at Lagos Airport as Aviation Workers Suspend Strike
By Aduragbemi Omiyale
Normalcy was restored at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos on Monday afternoon after workers of the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) Plc disrupted flight operations this morning.
The aviation workers had embarked on an indefinite strike action to ask for a better welfare package from the management of the company.
Their action left many air passengers stranded on Monday morning, with operators suspending their flights in the process.
But the industrial action was later called off by the leaders of the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) and the National Union of Air Transport Employees, which promised to enter into talks with NAHCO, with a view to resolving the matter.
The aggrieved employees of NAHCO asked the management to increase their salaries after hike air fares by 100 per cent. They claimed that the company was being insensitive to their welfare.
NAHCO Workers’ Strike Paralyses Flight Operations At Lagos Airport
By Aduragbemi Omiyale
Activities at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA), Ikeja, Lagos, were paralysed on Monday after some employees of the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) Plc embarked on an industrial action.
The NAHCO workers protested the failure of the management of the company to heed their demands, including an increase in salaries and better welfare packages.
Air passengers who were at the Lagos airport were left frustrated today due to the demonstration by the aviation workers, with a few international flights disrupted.
It was gathered that most airline operators were caught unawares as they did not have prior notice that the NAHCO staff members were planning to down tools on the first working day of the week.
This led to the abrupt suspension of flight operations by most operators this morning while efforts were being made to resolve this issue in order to reduce the losses that could arise from the action of the workers.
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